Pancreas transplantation results continue to improve with up to 90% of recipients with diabetes free of both insulin therapy and the need for close glucose monitoring following the procedure, according to a new study.
Pancreas transplantation is a surgical procedure in which a person receives a healthy donor pancreas while their own pancreas remains intact.
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People who have had a successful pancreas transplant are no longer insulin dependent and have good blood sugar control.
However, transplantation is a major surgical procedure that necessitates patients taking medications for the rest of their lives to suppress their immune system.
A pancreas transplant is not a routine operation.
According to the NHS, a pancreas transplant “gives someone with diabetes a healthy insulin-producing pancreas from a donor who’s recently died. This means they can produce their own insulin and do not need to inject it.”
Jonathan A. Fridell, M.D., Chief, Abdominal Transplant Surgery of the Indiana University School of Medicine in Indianapolis said “patients with diabetes who are failing insulin therapy or experiencing progressive diabetic complications regardless of diabetes type should be considered for a pancreas transplant.”
“All patients with diabetes and chronic kidney disease should undergo consideration for combined kidney and pancreas transplantation independent of geography or location.”
The research was published in the Endocrine Society’s Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism.